Science Laboratory Classroom Environments in Korea

Year: 2001

Author: Lee, Sunny S.U., Fraser, Barry

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

The purpose of this study was to investigate Korean high school students' perceptions of their laboratory classrooms, focusing on the aspects measured by the items in the Science Laboratory Environment Inventory (SLEI). The study involved 439 high school students from three different streams, 145 from the humanities stream, 195 from the science-oriented stream and 99 from the science-independent stream. The validity and reliability of a translated version of the SLEI were confirmed when used with Korean students. Associations between laboratory classroom environments and students’ attitudes were found. When the perceptions of students from the three streams were compared, it was found that students from the science-independent stream perceived their classroom environments more favourably than did students in the other two streams. Interviews with students confirmed their responses to items in the SLEI and provided additional information about laboratory classroom environments in Korea.

Key words: laboratory classroom environment, differences between streams, high schools, students’ attitudes